Tesco claims its online delivery service kept going in the recent snow and ice thanks to special cold weather tyres.

Fleet and equipment manager Dino Papas said fitting the tyres to over 3,200 vans in autumn 2011 had made a “considerable positive impact” on Tesco’s online operation.

The Michelin Agilis Alpin tyres are designed for light commercial vehicles and are made of a special rubber compound that reduces braking distances and provides extra grip when temperatures fall below 7C.

“When bad weather hits, the fact we have winter tyres on our vehicles gives drivers an extra level of confidence in the safety of their vans and their ability to make customer deliveries on time,” he said.

“Because of the cold weather tyres, we have been able to get to our destinations more easily in cold, wet or icy weather. Now we have seen the long-term benefits, it would be difficult to go back to operating without them.”

Tesco.com carries out over 500,000 deliveries every week, operating for up to 16 hours every day, seven days a week. It currently has 57% of the online grocery market [Kantar Media Compete].